Six important points for a top evisceration operation

A crucial primary process with many critical points

Nuova Eviscerator2

Evisceration is a vital part of the primary process. It’s the art of poultry evisceration to have a constantly high performance on all broiler weights ánd perform well in the giblet harvesting line too. Doing this job properly will safeguard the yield and quality of your end product. Six key points follow.

Nuova 16 Eviscerator

1. No fecal contamination

If done incorrectly, automatic evisceration can lead to fecal contamination. This can happen during venting, opening of the carcass and during evisceration itself. Use of the correct techniques can significantly reduce or even eliminate this risk.

The blade opening the carcass should cut round the vent and not straight across it. This method avoids damaging the rectum and cutting through the gut and spilling its contents.

Eviscerators should be designed so that the entire viscera pack including the crop is removed undamaged in a single smooth movement.

Once the viscera pack has been automatically drawn, it should be removed from the carcass immediately. For many years now, this has usually involved transferring the pack automatically to a separate pack shackle suspended from its own overhead conveyor system. Packs are transferred with the intestine and vent hanging down and away from the edible giblets, which can then be harvested automatically. Packs should be compact with no trailing intestines long enough to touch and contaminate their neighbor.

In those plants, often handling lower capacities, where packs are not transferred to a separate pack shackle, these should be properly presented over the back of the carcass for easy veterinary inspection and manual giblet harvesting. A straight – as opposed to folded – foot evisceration shackle means that carcasses hang slightly obliquely with minimal contact between the carcass and the potentially contaminating viscera pack.

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2 – Optimum giblet yields and quality

In many markets, the edible giblets, hearts, livers and gizzards, are valuable in their own right.

The use of techniques, which ensure that as close to 100% of edible giblets are harvested, is therefore essential for top giblet yields. Where giblets are presented over the back of the carcass for manual harvesting, it is important that these are highly visible and easy to access.

The manual harvesting of hearts and livers is even easier where giblets are transferred automatically to a separate pack line. Color coding pack shackles allows management to check on the performance of each harvester. For truly top yields and product quality, pack shackle design should allow all packs to be gripped firmly and eliminate the potential for pack loss or cross-contaminating contact between packs.

Automatic harvesting techniques should not damage delicate hearts and livers. The first company to offer fully automatic giblet harvesting from a separate pack shackle has almost thirty years’ experience of using the technique in markets all over the world. Since its launch in 1994, the system has been continually refined, updated and copied by more than one equipment manufacturer.

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3 – All commercial broiler weights

Today’s automatic evisceration systems must handle all commercial broiler weights at the highest line speeds. They should also be able to handle typical in-flock variances with no drop-off in performance. Yields and product quality should remain constant. Correct positioning and the ability to fine-tune eviscerator settings to the flock currently being processed are essential if these goals are to be met.

Traditionally handwheels and levers were used to change machine settings. Digitalization has begun to take over this function, offering additional benefits. Quite apart from being able to set the machine from a touchscreen, these settings can now be stored in the software’s memory. Changing settings from one flock to the next can be done precisely and at a single touch.

Post eviscerator operations broiler

4 – A clean carcass for the next process

No matter how well an automatic eviscerator functions, processors will want to be sure that all carcasses have been cleanly eviscerated, that no carcass leaves the department with unwanted material in the neck flap or the carcass cavity. This is the job of Neck Flap Inspection and Final Inspection Machines, essential features of any high-performance evisceration system.

The Neck Flap Inspection machine removes crop, trachea or esophagus remnants from the neck flap. The Final Inspection machine sucks out any residual lungs, while leaving kidneys in place. Finally, an automatic Inside Outside Washer cleans all carcasses thoroughly both inside and outside.

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5 – Optimum evisceration up-time

It is said that the big advantage of automation is that machines don’t get sick, have off-days or need time off. Settings can, however, be incorrect. Machine parts can wear. Machines can of course break down. These potential problems can all compromise uptime, yield and final product quality.

Here too digitalization can help. Software is now available, which will alert plant management to underperforming equipment right down to an individual unit. This means that if one unit of an eviscerator is malfunctioning, this is immediately made visible on a central control console. The processing plant’s technical department then knows exactly where the problem is and can intervene quickly and effectively. Downtime and potential yield loss can therefore be kept to an absolute minimum.

Nuova Evisceration

6 - Optimum cleanability

Last but certainly not least, comes top-class hygiene. In the highest volume, multi-shift processing plants, cleaning time between shifts is at a premium. It is therefore essential that all carrousel machines in the evisceration department can be thoroughly hygiened in the shortest possible time. This means designing machines, which are easy to clean. Machines should be of an open construction with no blind spots and no horizontal surfaces. 
Such equipment helps ensure the best possible start to each shift.


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